Navigating Your Pet’s Future Without You


It’s not always a guarantee that you’ll outlive your pet. In the case of a terminal illness or an unexpected catastrophe, a pet may live on after its owner. It’s a good idea to have a plan for your pet should something unexpected happen to you. At Woodlawn Cemetery, our compassionate staff understands how difficult it can be to imagine your life without your beloved animal friend. We encourage families in the Bronx to make caretaking plans for their pet ahead of time.


Here are some helpful tips on navigating your pet’s future without you:


Designate emergency caregivers for your pet.


We know it’s difficult to trust another person with the care and keeping of your pet. We suggest asking close friends or family members if they might consider being an emergency caregiver for your pet. After they accept, be sure all your emergency caregivers know about each other and the role they’re playing in your pet’s care. We recommend giving these individuals detailed information regarding the feeding and care of your pet, contact information for your veterinarian, and anything else they may need to perform their caregiving duties.


Choose a permanent caregiver for your pet.  


When you’re determining a permanent caregiver for your pet, consider what would be the most comfortable and supportive environment for your pet. Ask yourself if the person is already a pet owner or if they have the time and ability to properly care for your pet. Whoever you decide to ask to care for your pet, whether it’s your child or a longtime best friend, be sure to communicate to them how important your pet is to you. (They probably already know this!)


Work with an attorney.


It’s a good idea to put your wishes for the caring of your pet in writing so as to avoid confusion in the future. Set up a meeting with a local attorney to write up a will or trust that details what should happen to your pet in case of an emergency. Be sure to set aside the necessary funds for the care of your pet and outline these arrangements for your permanent caregiver.


If you worry about your pet being taken care of after you’re gone, it’s a great idea to plan their caretaking ahead of time. Planning caregiving for your pet in advance is an easy way to prepare for the future.


Another way we encourage New York families to prepare for the future is by planning their own end-of-life arrangements ahead of time. This way, you’ll be in control of your plans while relieving your family of making these decisions during a difficult time. Contact our staff with questions about planning a funeral or cremation with us. We’re always available to help in any way we can.